Cactus Culture for Amateurs eBook

William Watson (poet)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 228 pages of information about Cactus Culture for Amateurs.

P. Haagei (Haage’s); Fig. 13.—­Flowers about 5 in. across, flesh-coloured when first expanded, becoming carmine before fading.

[Illustration:  Fig. 13.—­Phyllocactus Haagei.]

P. ignescens (fiery).—­Flowers 8 in. across, almost flat when expanded; petals numerous, deep brilliant scarlet.

P. Jenkinsoni (Jenkinson’s).—­Flowers medium in size, colour cherry-red.

P. Johnstonei (Johnstone’s).—­Flowers large, with broad scarlet petals.

P. Kaufmanni (Kaufmann’s).—­Flowers purplish-red, very large.

P. kermesina magnus (large scarlet).—­An enormous-flowered kind, having produced blossoms which measured 10 in. across; petals vivid orange with a tip and central stripe of red; sepals blood-red.

P. Pfersdorffii. (Pfersdorff’s).—­Flowers as in Cereus grandiflorus, 8 in. to 10 in. across, very fragrant; petals white; sepals yellow, brownish outside.

P. Rempleri (Rempler’s).—­Branches three-angled; flowers with short, linear, incurved sepals; petals long, broad, arranged like a tube, colour salmon-red.

P. roseus grandiflorus (large rose-flowered); Fig. 14.—­Flowers 6 in. long and broad, nodding, white.

[Illustration:  Fig. 14.—­Phyllocactus roseus grandiflorus.]

P. Schlimii (Schlim’s).—­Branches three-angled; flowers large, sepals bright purple; petals broad, purple, tinged with scarlet.

P. splendens (splendid).—­Flowers 8 in. across, purple-pink.

P. Wrayi (Wray’s).—­Flowers 5 in. long by 8 in. in diameter; sepals brown on the outside, yellow inside; petals yellowish-white, fragrant when first expanded.



(From cereus, pliant; in reference to the stems of some species.)

Over 200 distinct species of Cereus are, according to botanists, distributed over the tropical and temperate regions of America and the West Indies, extending to the Galapagos, or “Tortoise” Islands, 200 miles off the coast of Peru.  It was in these islands that the late Charles Darwin found several small kinds of Cereus, some of them growing near the snow-line in exposed situations on the highest mountains.  In Mexico, C. giganteus, the most colossal of all Cacti, is found rearing its tall, straight, columnar stems to a height of 60 ft., and branching near the top, “like petrified giants stretching out their arms in speechless pain, whilst others stand like lonely sentinels keeping their dreary watch on the edge of precipices.”  In the West Indies most of the night-flowering kinds are common, their long, creeping stems clinging by means of aerial roots to rocks, or to the exposed trunks of trees, where their enormous, often fragrant, flowers are produced in great abundance, expanding only after the sun has set.  Between these three distinct groups we find among the plants of this elegant genus great variety

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Cactus Culture for Amateurs from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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